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Crypto exchange Binance has been granted preliminary approval to offer trading and custody services for digital assets in Kazakhstan. The exchange is yet to complete the full application process but the development has already been hailed as a landmark achievement for the company in the Central Asian nation which only recently took steps to regulate coin trading.

Binance Receives Regulatory Approval From Kazakhstan Authorities

Kazakhstan’s Astana Financial Services Authority (AFSA), the regulatory body that oversees the Astana International Financial Center (AIFC), has issued a temporary license approval to the world’s leading cryptocurrency exchange, Binance, the company unveiled in a blog post published on Monday.

The in-principle approval requires Binance to complete the application process to get the full license, which will allow it to run a digital asset trading facility and provide digital asset custody services on the AIFC’s platform, the announcement noted.

The move comes after this spring, Kazakhstan’s financial watchdog launched a pilot project to establish and develop cryptocurrency exchanges in the country. Then, in June, the authorities in Nur-Sultan allowed AIFC-registered platforms to open accounts with local banks.

“Kazakhstan has shown itself to be a pioneer in Central Asian crypto adoption and regulation,” Binance founder and CEO Changpeng Zhao has been quoted as saying. “This further signifies Binance’s commitment to being a compliance-first exchange and providing products and services in a safe and well-regulated environment across the globe,” the crypto entrepreneur added.

Gleb Kostarev, regional head at Binance, described the development as a “landmark achievement” for Binance in Kazakhstan. “We are grateful to the Astana International Financial Center for their support and vision in granting Binance Kazakhstan this in-principle license approval,” he emphasized.

Kazakhstan attracted a significant number of crypto mining enterprises after China cracked down on the industry in May 2021. However, critics have insisted that the business brings little benefit to the country’s economy as it doesn’t create many jobs, exacerbates a growing power deficit, pays little tax, and transfers its profits abroad.

As a result, the government has taken steps to shut down illegal mining farms, expand registration requirements for crypto miners, increase a surcharge for the electricity consumed to mint digital currencies, and provide options for mining companies to exchange their cryptocurrencies on domestic platforms.

“Large investors seeking new markets need clear-cut and well-managed rules, as well as high standards of regulatory practice. When a regulator meets these requirements, it creates collaboration based on trust and an ecosystem where players can work safely and efficiently,” commented Nurkhat Kushimov, the chief executive of AFSA. “We believe that Binance’s work will further develop this vibrant ecosystem of the digital asset industry locally and regionally,” he elaborated.

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